May 22, 2020
Attorney General Sean D. Reyes released the following statement on the passing of Coach Jerry Sloan:
“Today, I join the many Utah Jazz and NBA fans around the world in mourning the loss of Coach Jerry Sloan. He was a tough, no-nonsense All-Star player and Hall of Fame coach who demanded the highest level of excellence and hard work from himself, his staff and players. On a personal level, I enjoyed our interactions very much. Coach was a man of no pretense. He was always himself and those around him were better for it. He took time to talk to me about life, tractors (he had dozens of them) and sports in spite of the fact I grew up as a kid in the rival Lakers organization.
“The leadership and consistency he provided to the Jazz organization over decades as its coach are unparalleled and he will always be remembered for the Jazz’s most successful years to date. Because he was not self-promoting, many Jazz fans don’t realize the elite company he keeps among the Mount Rushmore of NBA coaches.
“Some of his most impressive accomplishments include: A career regular-season win-loss record of 1,223-803, placing him third all-time in NBA wins at the time he retired. Coach Sloan was only the fifth coach in NBA History to reach 1,000 victories and is one of two coaches in NBA History to record 1,000 wins with one club. He also coached for one team longer than anyone in NBA history. He coached the Jazz to 15 consecutive playoff appearances from 1989-2003-one of only four coaches in NBA history with 15-plus consecutive seasons with a winning record (Greg Popovich, Pat Riley and Phil Jackson are the others). He, of course, led the Utah Jazz to NBA Finals appearances in 1997 and 1998 and was deserving of multiple Coach of the Year awards (in my book).
“In his later years, Coach fought Parkinson’s disease and dementia the way he fought through a screen or for a rebound–with determination and unapologetically. Saysha and I offer our condolences to his family and close friends, to the Utah Jazz organization and to Jazz fans everywhere.”